Under the 2010 Affordable Care Act, millions of Americans gained health coverage in 2014. Coverage is key to accessing affordable, high-quality care, but consumers who struggle to understand how health insurance works and how to estimate out-of-pocket costs are at risk of going without needed care even if they are covered. This brief outlines identifies what health insurance aspects pose the greatest problems for consumers, which groups need more assistance to enroll and use benefits, and what topics and skills consumer-counseling efforts should focus on.
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21 Oct 2014
The rollout of California's Kindergarten Readiness Act has given rise to questions about how transitional kindergarten is being implemented in districts throughout California. This second research brief in a series highlighting findings from the study focuses on characteristics of transitional kindergarten classrooms compared with those of kindergarten classrooms.
20 Oct 2014
As American Baby Boomers retire and age, questions about how to deliver long-term care efficiently and control health care costs grow more important with each projected increase in health care needs. This brief examines recent research on both costs and outcomes, exposes fault lines in previous approaches to assessing consumer preferences in long-term care, and provides new evidence on the cost-effectiveness of current long-term care policy.
12 Oct 2014
How much graduates earn when they enter the labor market has become a hot-button issue as student debt mounts and fewer new graduates get jobs with the wages needed to pay off their loans. As this status report and these independent research findings show, the need now is for more long-term earnings data; fuller disclosure; and simpler, more accessible data presentation, so students and parents can make better decisions.
5 Oct 2014
In recent years, there has been an increased focus on turning around our nation’s low-performing schools, with substantial investments from the U.S. Department of Education into new and continuing awards under the federal School Improvement Grants (SIG) program. This brief focuses on the implementation of SIG by examining three interrelated levers for school improvement: school operational authority, state and district support for turnaround, and state monitoring of turnaround efforts.
30 Sep 2014
The extreme levels of debt accrued by students pursuing postsecondary degrees has been identified as one of the nation’s most worrisome educational issues. About 90 percent of STEM Ph.D. recipients funded their graduate education through primarily institutional sources. In contrast, 65 percent of those with a doctorate in the social, behavioral and economic sciences did.
30 Sep 2014
Gender imbalance in doctoral education in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields raises important questions about the extent to which women experience differential access, encouragement, and opportunity for academic advancement. In the STEM field, animal sciences and mathematics had far more men earning doctorates while forestry, information science/studies and three categories of engineering had more women.
24 Sep 2014
The participation of diverse groups of individuals in STEM academic and workforce communities is severely lacking, particularly in the context of the nation’s shifting demographic landscape. This brief examines black STEM Ph.D. recipients’ institutional pathways to the doctorate and provides insight into who among black students are earning STEM doctoral degrees, whether black students are earning these degrees at historically black colleges and universities or other types of institutions, and the extent to which they being supported financially in their degree pursuits.
31 Jul 2014
The Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) represents a fundamental transformation of the way California allocates state funds to school districts and the ways the state expects districts to make decisions about (and report on) the use of these funds. This brief identifies some early lessons about how best to use the new system to meet student needs, especially the traditionally underserved.
9 Jul 2014
During the last few decades, national-, state-, and institutional-level initiatives have been implemented to build and expand the STEM workforce by recruiting and retaining people who have been traditionally underrepresented in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields in higher education. The underlying idea is that individuals who earn STEM degrees aspire to careers in STEM, but to what degree is this true?